March 31st, 2016 | 1 Comment »

I was going to title this “threads”, but when I fired up my computer, Pandora gave me Mason Jennings crooning something about your love.  What could I do, but comply?  It’s because, ultimately, this post will come around to being about a declaration of harmony and gratitude for such a love that I couldn’t have even imagined had I not lived the life I’ve lived.  The thread.  Mason Jennings.  One of the sweetest early memories of this present love was a silly karaoke session we had on one of our first evenings together.  It was winter time.  Possibly New Year’s Eve.  He had come over, and we were singing, but mostly I was singing and trying to get him to sing.  I can be persuasive.  Ahem.  So I eventually did get him to sing, and the song he chose was a Mason Jennings song (Your New Man –it’s a hoot!).  So.  There you go.

I’ll get back to him.  Meanwhile, I’ve just remembered the original thread I had in mind.  I was reflecting on past loves and moments.  I was thinking about the trials and lessons and various moments of beauty and pain and sorrow, and I was thinking about who remains in my life now, who has a particular place reserved in me, in my heart, just for them.  There are only a few.  I’ve always loved deeply and fully, with whomever I was loving deeply and fully at the time.  With time, however, healing has occurred and left remaining a warm and comfortable glow in which I finally see that I have lovingly let go those who needed to be let go, and loving retained in a gentle and altruistic way those who have their own special place in my life.  Everyone who has ever been has a very special place in my heart, in the depth of my memories.  But not everyone remains in my life, in my real world here and now.

I think back to the beginning.  JJW.  The father of my first two  unborn.  We were so young.  We were kids ourselves.  Those children weren’t meant to be.  We weren’t meant to be.  Yet today, here, now, we are friends.  We see a glimpse of each others’ lives from afar.  He has a wonderful wife, a true soul connection, a beautiful life that could not have been had we not been.  I am so happy that he found her and that he’s lived the rich and beautiful life that he’s lived.  Who are we to each other now?  Warm friends from childhood.  Nerds.  We reveal our stupid silly nerdy quirky selves in the occasional Facebook posts.  JJW.  Yes, he has a place in my life.  Smiley face.

Who’s next in my OCD lineup of present life former loves?  Oh.  JEM.  We text each other on our respective birthdays every year.  Every year!  Once in a while we’ll call, maybe once a year.  We inquire about family members, laugh about goofy old times, describe our children to each other.  It’s always sweet and sincere.  Genuine.  It’s especially sweet because we had ended badly, with such a sour taste remaining for so very many years.  I’m always grateful for this particular friendship, because my heart is so heavy when sourness lingers.

Then there’s DAN.  Mister Divorce Rebound.  Perhaps that’s the main reason why he lingers in the periphery of my present life, if Facebook status can be considered present life periphery.  I will probably always have a fondness for the one who gave me a glimpse of the possibilities that life held post-divorce.  Hope!  Of course we could never be, but I think we were meant to be when we were.  Maybe, also, we can be real life friends now, as with JEM, because enough years have passed to let the bitterness of the breaks fade and be replaced with the brightness of younger days.

This brings me to BXD.  Surely he’ll post a comment that I should have given him the BFD tag when I wasn’t able to google a middle initial in 30 seconds or less.  I think we each suffered our own kind of anguish and had to work through some layers of bitterness before the friendship was able to re-emerge.  I am delighted and grateful that it survives.  He is like a lifeline to me, because he understands the incomprehensible dark sides that are so  hard for anyone to understand.  He understands, because he lives with it too.  Depression.  The elephant in the room.  He is so refreshingly logical that I can fully trust that anything that I might run by him will be evaluated clearly, completely, and truthfully.  Also, our professional fields  have some overlap, so there’s something to be said about being able to talk shop.  We share sporadic flurries of email communications a few times a year.

As I’m finding these words to describe these chapters of my life, I’m counting the calendar time during which such life moments were defined.  Four years with JJW.  One year with JEM.  Four months with DAN.  Two, maybe three months with BXD.  Friendships fostered during a span of five and half years of my life.  I love that what surfaces in the here and now with all these friends is the laugh.  We chuckle.  We grin.  We snicker.  We chide.  The relationships we have are all grounded in levity and warmth.  It’s a beautiful thing.

And this brings me to the here and now, here and now.  EHB.  Nearly sixteen months and it’s as fresh and sweet and fun as the day we met.  We have so much fun together!  We laugh!  We talk for hours about all sorts of deep and interesting or crazy and ridiculous things.  We toil over projects at his place or mine, always with a smile and a spring in the step.  I wonder how much of our compatibility is merely because I finally sorted myself out.  Maybe he recently sorted himself out too, or maybe we both found ourselves ready at the same time, so somehow, miraculously, we just fit.  I don’t think I can explain it, but I certainly am grateful for it!

He’s nerdy.  I don’t know how many people actually know that about him.  I doubt very many.  He’s a cool cat on the exterior.  I love that he’s nerdy, and I love that he’s a cool cat too.

He’s thoughtful.  He’s a very internal person, so he thinks deeply about the things he thinks about.  I can take him seriously.

He’s fun.

Integrity means something to him.  I could go on and on, but I was working towards a conclusion of sorts.

The other day I told him that we should start counting down our anniversary (given that we have an anniversary), starting at 40, because it seems like we will have to be together that long in order to do the things together that we want to do.  All the books to read, the movies to see, the podcasts to hear, the places to go.  There is so much living to live!

And so I’ve finally come to the point of all this.  I’m finally here!  I wandered down paths with all sorts of twists and turns until now.  Every moment had its value.  And through it all, some friendships remain like glowing embers, softly warming the outer reaches of my heart.  I think I can say that I am truly making peace with my past, that I like my present, and that I have hope for my future.  I think I am finally on my way to getting over myself, so I am finally on my way!

 

May 12th, 2015 | No Comments »

My nature yearns for understanding. Explanation. If I can understand something, if there is an explanation –for some thing, any thing, most things, I can make peace with whatever it is, and let it go or let it be.  At times I encounter things for which reason escapes me.  Experiences that I can’t explain.  Choices that confound me.  And just because something seems inexplicable, doesn’t mean that it is.  It means only that I haven’t yet acquired the wisdom or perspective to understand.  When I was a child, I spoke as a child, understood as a child, thought as a child…

Also, time is a great healer.  Time and a peaceful disposition.

Occasionally thoughts and memories are stirred, and I am drawn to ponder once more these inexplicable things.

Nobody makes it through life unscathed.

lost in my mind

Recently, the concept of exploitation has surfaced in my mind as an explanation of sorts for certain life events.  It’s by no means a complete or satisfying explanation, but it’s the beginning of a channel of thought that might lead to a deeper understanding.  Exploitation suggests an offender –the one exploiting, and a victim –the one exploited.  It absolves, somewhat, the one exploited from the responsibility of the situation.  Not that I am advocating transferring responsibility for a situation to someone, anyone, or anything other than myself.  The thing is, if I’m caught up in the self-blame game, or the coulda shoulda woulda cycle, I spin around and around and never get past that.  Understanding is never achieved, and I can’t put the matter to rest.

I don’t know what draws or compels one to exploit another.   Oh, I suppose things like power, control, greed, and self-serving attitudes fuel such things.  I still fail to understand the draw of such things, other than to feebly attempt to fill some deep seated emptiness, insecurity, or fear.

Anyway.

Once, on a night train in Southern Italy, packed like sardines with other travelers, my friend and I were molested by an Italian man.  Or rather, by his feet.  It was hot and late, and we hadn’t paid for sleeping quarters, so we all dozed in our seats, facing each other with our feet stretched out before us.  It seems like there may have been 8 or 10 people in each booth, 4 or 5 on each side of the booth, facing each other.  The locals slipped off their shoes and put their feet up, and it seemed the normal thing to do in such circumstances.  Budget travelers trying to minimize the discomfort of a long night time train ride.  At some point in time, the man sitting opposite me started to slowly move his toes and probe.  My friend squirmed and glared at him, but I tried not to move.  Her squirming and glaring may have made him stop advancing the foot that was planted in front of her, I don’t know, but he kept on with the foot planted in front of me. I wanted to scream at him to stop, but I didn’t.  I was afraid of making a scene in front of all those foreigners.  He kept on, and I was afraid to look at him, but I occasionally caught a glimpse of him out of the corner of my half closed eyes.  He seemed sinister.  Perhaps I detected a smirk of sorts, as if he dared me to make him stop.  I didn’t move.  I held my breath and pretended to sleep.  I didn’t know what to do.  I don’t remember when he finally stopped.

I suppose the topic of rape prompted this train of inquiry.  What defines such a thing?  The lack of consent?  Does not fighting back or raising a scene mean consent?  Does not actively or overtly objecting mean consent?

Another experience involved an Iranian man.  He was charming, gregarious, and smooth talking.  We were neighbors and met when I moved into an apartment after breaking off a long term relationship with a decent guy.  Now that I am writing about this, I recall he told me he was Italian.  People were more accepting of Italians than Iranians, he later told me, so he generally presented himself as Italian.  Somehow, and to this day I cannot explain how events transpired, I ended up being a sex partner to him.  I never wanted it.  I never consented.  Yet I did what he told me to do.  Why?  I DON’T KNOW.  I would lie in my bed at night and he would do his thing.  MY bed!  Why was he even in my house?  I would lie there like a sack of flour.  Not one bit of interaction.  I would think to myself, how can he possibly enjoy this?  It’s completely one sided and not the least bit interactive.  There was no embracing, no kissing, no motion other than him getting himself off in me.  I can feel my face wrenched in a grimace as I write this, perplexed and disgusted on many levels, to this day.  That wasn’t the extent of it.  He would stand in front of me and tell me to drop to my knees and blow him, and I would.  I did what he told me to do, and it continued for some time.  I don’t know how it happened.  I don’t know why I did it.  Once he brought a friend over.  The General.  They brought a Persian meal of some sort and we dined, then he left.  Where did the other guy go?  Why did he leave?  When would he be back?  They had some flurried conversation in Farsi and he left The General with me.  A stout man in his 60s, I’m guessing, who spoke no English, and used to be a general, back in the old country.  I don’t know.  We were sitting on the couch and I attempted to make conversation.    Apparently he had some background in sports medicine or physical therapy and he picked up one of my arms and began to massage it.  I don’t know how much time passed, but somehow I ended up in my underwear on my bed, being massaged.  It was a bit like an out of body experience in which I looked down and saw a big old Iranian man working his hands over my nearly naked body, working his way towards my nether regions.  How did my clothes come off?  How did I end up in my bedroom, on my bed, nearly naked?  I saw myself and my tattered underwear.  I had this ratty tatty bra that I was trying to get a few more wears out of, and it had a big tear across one of the cups.  It was embarrassing for it to be exposed like that.  Nobody ever saw it, because it was underwear.  But seeing myself in my tattered underwear in front of a stranger prodded my brain into a better state of clarity and I snapped back to reality, jumped up and made him leave.  I’m glad he left.  He could easily have forced himself further.  That was my wake-up call, as if whatever fog or spell I was under lifted, and after that I was able to form a plan to get the hell out of that situation.  There is a lot more to that story, in which I realized that I wasn’t at all safe, but the mere fact that they thought I was a stupid woman gave me the buffer I needed to get myself to safety.  I played dumb after that, more or less, then moved several towns away, in the dead of night, without a trace.  Understandably, I have a general prejudice and phobia toward Middle Eastern men (I have some very dear Middle Eastern friends, so it’s not a universal prejudice).

These aren’t the only events or experiences in my collection.  There are more, and I am only one person.  One gentle, nice, intelligent, and even strong person.  How many other people have tales like these to tell?  Of all the spoken experiences out there, how many more remain unspoken?  I suspect the number is staggering.  I would venture a guess that more than half of all people have an experience of similar proportion with which they can identify or relate.

So.

Was that rape? I don’t know.  Exploitation?  I think so.  I didn’t want any of those situations.  They are a part of my life, part of my collection of experiences, part of my history.  Have I come to terms with these things?  No.  Because I don’t understand how or why they happened.  I’m not the kind of person who lets things like that happen.  Yet I did.  Why?  How?

I DON’T KNOW.

Was it okay?  No.

Am I okay?  Yes.  But I still don’t understand.

March 27th, 2015 | 1 Comment »

I’ve decided to let the anxiety go. Rather, there are so many positive things to think about.  I consider the various close calls I’ve had in life, yet here I am.  I am a mother to two fine youngsters.   A mother!  It was my life’s dream, and it came true for me.  I have a small circle of friends, dear and well loved.  Untold wealth!  I have a profession, as much of a head scratcher as that may be.  I provide well for my family and our needs are met.  We live in a beautiful, peaceful place, surrounded by trees.  We have everything that we could possibly need.  I have the particular love of a good and fine man.  I am especially blessed at this time in my life.  I have more vigor and hope and joy now than I’ve ever had before.

So this is what I have to say about turning fifty.

Bring it!

bring it

Posted in chapters of my life, me
March 22nd, 2015 | 1 Comment »

SUCK IT, FIFTY!

I’ve been struggling with anxiety over the milestone looming on my horizon.  It’s taken many forms, and has been mostly low grade, but mounting.  I thought for a moment that with such a milestone I should do something memorable or have something memorable to show for it.  I don’t know.  The last time I bought myself something ridiculously expensive as a milestone memento, it was stolen.   Not that that will completely take the wind out of the sails for any future extravagances, but it does leave some tarnish on the idea.  Anyway.  I have been feeling like I should go somewhere special, or buy something special, or do something special.  But I’m at such a loss.  I haven’t had any time to make any plans, as far as the notion of a getaway goes.  Where would I go, and what would I do?  Logistics.  God knows I need a break (ummm, I did just take a week and cruise to Mexico with my kids and all told, fifteen family members, and it was so wonderful to spend time with family, and it was so wonderful to feel and breathe warm ocean air and hear the sound of waves lapping against the boat, hour upon hour upon hour, and  yes, that was amazing, but of course I will throw in a but…   ….but in order to take any time off I have to complete all the work that I would have to do for the week that I’m away, which means, really, no break from work at all…  whine, whine, whine) and a rest and I don’t know what.  I need something.  I’ve been struggling with the changing tides of my work for some time now.  There’s little to no respite on the immediate horizon, as far as that goes.  Some of the bigger projects will work themselves out in the next few months.  Or rather, I have to finish them, and they will be a thing of the past, after which I might be able to steer myself toward a more manageable workload.  The immediate forecast is bleak, and there is so much pressure, beyond that which I place upon myself.  I am famous for demanding great expectations of myself, so this present workload predicament is taking its toll.  Blah, blah, blah.  I am so weary of complaints.  My own.  My kids’.  Anybody’s.  I have almost no threshold remaining.  I’ve been uncharacteristically irritable, off and on.  Weary.  I know that if I could somehow get enough rest, I’d be FINE.

Almost 29 years of indentured servitude, little to no sunlight, and countless hours of commuting are taking their toll...

Anyway.  I’m not one for pomp and circumstance.  I don’t want a party, and GOD FORBID, a surprise party.  I don’t want to be the center of attention.  I don’t want lavish gifts.  I don’t know what I want for that day.  The kids have visitation with their dad that weekend, and they are oblivious to life events, milestones, and things of that nature.  I suppose that’s my fault, since I haven’t actually taught them to be aware of such things.  I wouldn’t mind doing something special with my sisters, but we are out of time for planning any sort of get together.  Logistics again.  The sweetest thing I can imagine is having a nice meal with my loved ones.  And so it is settled.  My friend will prepare a lovely meal, and we will hang out as a sweet circle of three –my friend, my honey,and I–for the evening, in the comfort of my home.  Simple.  Sweet.  Perfect.  That is all I want.  Bliss.

I hope the 50s are the new 40s, because the 40s were mostly all right...

And as for turning fifty?  I am having a hard time wrapping my head around that number.  It seems like it’s a number that represents something that I just can’t quite put my finger on.   Age?  As if I was supposed to have accomplished something remarkable by now?  Or I should be at some other, more arrived, state of self by now?  Shouldn’t I have life figured out by now?  Shouldn’t I know how to handle stress?  Shouldn’t I know how to manage my children?  Shouldn’t I be cool, calm, and collected?  Well, externally I am all of those.  Internally?  I’m cool, I suppose.  Or maybe tepid.  I’m calm.  I’m collected in a scattered way.  I’m just weary.  Worn.  I went through my list of Facebook friends and pared it down to mostly family.  I could have just shut it completely down, but I do like seeing pictures of my family.  I am actually pleasantly surprised at the feeling of liberation that this small task accomplished.  Inability to keep up with the news feed has been frustrating, and I don’t need any additional source of frustration in my life.

I don't think I wanna be FIFTY. I'm not ready for this!

What would I have imagined for myself by this stage of life?  Happily married?  Kids healthy, grown, and making their own way in life?  Comfortably situated in some career?  Maybe those are all just projections from my early adulthood.  Time has marched on and things are as they are.  My life is not all those things, but my life is beautiful!

Looks like trouble! I still have some oomph left in me...

I don’t feel as though I’m emotionally ready to be fifty.  I feel as though I am only just now getting my momentum, only just now settling in to simply living.  I feel as though I’m only just now getting started in life.  I suppose that realization brings with it a little bit of panic.  Fifty years have gone by and I surely don’t have fifty years left.  I want to be able to live joyfully, to let all unpleasant things slide from me, never taking hold.  I don’t want to allow negative thoughts to crowd my mind.  I want to be comfortable in my skin and in my mind.  I am a rock, standing firm on the ocean shore, while waves crash around me.  They can’t hurt me.  I stand solidly, and let them fall at my feet.  I feel them and I let them go.  I breathe in.  I breathe out.  I keep on loving.  And so I live.

Wrinkles are emerging, but at least they are the smiley happy eye wrinkles...

I have this set of selfies in a photo album called “Fifty Shades of… …Sue” that I’m planning to post on my FB wall next Saturday. My suck it fifty declaration. My sense of humor isn’t always evident, but these are the thoughts that have been milling about in my mind in the past weeks and days while I’ve taken those pictures. All this anxiety. So to offset that, a collection of serendipitously lovely images. Hey, there’s another pretty one. Let’s post that. Really, then, it’s an unveiled invitation for others to say, my goodness, you don’t look anywhere near FIFTY! I have no shame.

September 29th, 2014 | 1 Comment »

I’ve written about ripples before, how one thing impacts another and waves move ever outward, the whispering breath of my spirit carried out into the world, brushing gently against all in its path.  A kiss on the horizon that finds its way back to me.

There is a song that moves my heart.  When I hear it, the strains fill me, move me, cover me, and touch my very soul.  Everything about it speaks to me, as though it was written just for me.  Not long ago, I mentioned this song in conversation, and remarked that it’s one of my favorites.  It comes up on my Pandora mix every once in a while, and it almost always makes me cry.  It just takes me to that place.  The other day, a friend shared this very song on Facebook, especially for me.  That ripple had made its way back to me.

Late at night, after the kids had gone to sleep, I sat cradled in the hammock swing on my porch, breathed in the crisp autumn air, and listened.  Over and again, I played that song.  Tears fell.  I went inside the music, and sobbed, from the very core of me, releasing my self from myself.  I thought about my life, and who I am.  I thought about what I want.  I thought about love, what it is, and where it comes from.  I thought about my place in this earth, the mother I am, the life I lead, the responsibilities I shoulder.  All the while, the music played, and tears rolled down my face.

I sobbed my heart out, and decided that it really doesn’t matter if the man who fits ever appears, because I’m beautiful through and through, in my heart of hearts where beauty matters.  In that place, I am pure and innocent, and in that place I am love.  It’s not about all the men who have gone before.  It’s not about anything but me.  In that place, I see my self.  I see someone who is worthy of my love.  I stood naked in front of my mirror, while the music played.  I touched myself.  I moved my hands all over my body, slowly, looking at the curves and the shadows, looking through unveiled eyes at something beautiful, as tears rolled down.

I must have listened to that song thirty times or more.  I cried my heart out, and touched myself, looked at myself with respect and regard, all the while loving myself.  I know who I am.  I saw myself, maybe for the first time, for the beautiful woman that I am.  I saw myself, perhaps, as those who love me see me.

A small spark flickered inside of me; a glimmer of life reborn.  Tears streamed down my face and I knew.

when oceans rise

I am healing.  I can heal.

Lead me where my trust is without borders.

Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander.

I will call upon your name.

Keep my eyes above the waves.

My soul will rest in your embrace.

I am yours and you are mine.

When oceans rise, my soul will rest in your embrace.

Fifteen, twenty, twenty five years, or more –scars from so very long ago.  I am healing.  God is speaking to me in ways that most people wouldn’t understand, in ripples and waves that make their way back to me.  I see where I am, and where I am going.  It likely won’t make sense to anybody but me, but it doesn’t have to.  This is my journey.  I am going to walk down this healing path for a while.

I am not afraid.

I am not alone.

June 16th, 2014 | 4 Comments »

I’ve been on a home organization frenzy recently, which includes an attempt to organize my photos.  As I browsed through them, I started to see some of them differently.  Namely, pictures of myself from a year ago.  Was that really me?  Who was that?

I’ve been on a journey to find myself for some time now.  I know I’ve been singing that tune for ages, but it’s different now.  Now I see where I’ve been lying to myself for ever, where I’ve disregarded and dishonored the very essence of my self for the better part of my life.  Not that it’s been wrong to put others first.  I’ve done well for others.  I’ve helped others.  I will still do so.  At my core, I’m a helper.

The thing that I noticed today is that I’m no longer hiding behind denial.  I dishonored myself.  I let myself go.  I loathed myself. I don’t know why.  I can’t say.  I can’t see.  Only that I did it.  And even so, when I buried myself so deeply, wherever it was that I’ve been (buried under a hundred pounds of fat), still, there has always been a part of ME, the real, authentic me, looking for a way out, looking for the light of day.  She wanted to live.  All along, she wanted to break free and see the light of day.  So today, with the recognition and acceptance of what I’ve done to myself, I also give forgiveness.  Because I love myself.  I wasn’t loving myself, but now I see that love and forgiveness go hand in hand.  And just like that, I’ve forgiven myself and discovered that I love myself.  I’m coming home to me.

I want to clarify that this isn’t at all about being obese, or becoming obese.  And it’s not at all about losing weight, either.  It’s not about the age old misconception that, oh, if only I could or would lose the weight, I’d be happy.  Losing some weight has given me the courage to look at myself, and to see myself.  So this is about getting lost.  It’s about fear.  It’s about hiding.  It’s about the emotional, not the physical self.  Only the emotional problems had a very physical manifestation.  As they do.

There aren’t very many people (and by people, I mean dear friends) who knew me before I lost myself.  In fact, I can only think of three —Dindu, Suse, and my sister S.  These people have loved me for most of my life (and I them).  It all happened so long ago.  I don’t even know when.  Or why.  I know of times and events that caused things to escalate, but the beginning?  I don’t know.  My sister thinks it started when I had an abortion.  She could be right (she’s usually right).  She used to say, “Sissy, that’s when you lost your mojo.  Where is my sissy?  I want my sissy back.  I miss her.”   She’s been saying that for years.

So I’m coming home to me.  Those words stir the memory of a song from my youth.  In my heart and in my head, I hear Hosea.  Come back to me with all your heart –don’t let fear keep us apart.  Trees do bend, though straight and tall –so must we to others’ call.  Long have I waited for your coming home to me and living deeply our new life.  The wilderness will lead you to your heart, where I will speak.  Integrity and justice, with tenderness you shall know.

I’m on my way.  Home to me.  My arms are open.  I feel the sunlight on my face.

let the light shine on me

I’m like the very hungry caterpillar.  I’ve eaten my way through the difficult parts of my life, and trapped myself in a nearly impenetrable cocoon.  And now, I’ve started to nibble my way through these walls and I can see the light of day.

Some day soon I’m going to find my smile.  I’m going to become a beautiful butterfly.  And then?  Then I will FLY!

June 8th, 2014 | Enter your password to view comments.

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February 5th, 2014 | No Comments »

The title alone would likely draw all kinds of traffic, if I didn’t have search engines blocked.  Not that I want traffic.  I write for myself, blah blah blah.

I’ve got these thoughts swirling about in my mind that I’ve never had the courage nor taken the time to ponder very deeply, let alone put to paper.  But I think it’s time.  I’m not sure how cohesive it will be, but I’m going to give it a shot.

…why I don’t like …

I don’t like to give or receive oral sex.  In general.  Or at least not much.  Maybe if the moon is waxing gibbous and the planets are aligned just right.  It’s been a matter of contention throughout the better part of  my sexually active life.  Why is this so?  Simple.  It’s because of negative associations that are embedded in the memories of predatorial coercive experiences from my youth.  It’s very difficult to release such associations, and it’s not particularly easy to talk about them.  Why would I want to talk about them, anyway?  Avoidance is so much easier.  Just don’t go there.  I don’t want to think about icky things that happened long ago.

…keeping numbers low…

I, as a human, am a sexual being.  I, as a hot blooded Aries woman of Asian and Scandinavian descent, am a sexual being.  I yearn for connection, for a fullness that is hard to describe.  And I don’t yearn for variety.  Dear God, no.  I don’t get that, about people.  Wondering what it would be like with this one, that one, or the other one.  As if people are flavors of ice cream to try.  I find it gross.  Icky.  There are many icky connotations when it comes to me and the ideas that are trapped in my mind revolving around sexuality.  So sex as a sport, sex as recreation, are icky to me.  I’m so not interested.  Ick, icky, pfthtft, blech.

I have no interest in the dating scene.  I’ve been terrified of it all along, from the very beginning when I found myself adult and single.  Because, as far as I could tell, dating meant having sex with various people.  It shouldn’t mean that, but somehow I ended up harboring that interpretation.  Maybe because when I was young, it seemed that the male prime directive was to get laid, not married.  They wanted to play the field.  I wanted to settle down.

I don’t want to go on exposing myself to others in the pursuit of Mister Right For Me.  Enough is enough.  I want to keep my numbers low.  Or as low as possible.  There is too much at stake, with such frivolity.  Not just physical, with the risk of disease, but the emotional toll is steep.  And I’ve never been frivolous, really.  Serially monogamous, as they say.  But I suppose it’s all relative.  I suppose I could be considered a trollop in some circles.  Because my numbers…  My number is 13, I think.  (I don’t really want to count any more.  I think it’s 13.)   Anyway.  In my own estimation, I have not been frivolous.  I’ve only ever wanted to be with just one.

…in an ideal world, there would have only ever been one…

My number would have been low, in an ideal world.  My number would have been one.  I would have settled in to life with my person, and we would have learned each other, grown with each other, and built a life together.

I know people, my age, whose number is one.  I applaud them.  It’s hard to fathom how they were able to manage it.

…letting go…

It’s not an ideal world.  I have my issues that constrain the relationships I find myself in.  I have a yearning, a hunger, an ache to let everything go and immerse myself in the moment.  I want to release all the constraints and let them flow away so that I can breathe and move and honor each sensation that my body can feel.  How much of this depends on another?  How much of this depends only on me?  Has anyone ever truly let go with me?  Have I ever truly let go with anyone?

…ripped off…

For so much of my adult life I’ve felt like I’ve been ripped off, sexually.  Negative associations aside, I still have a hunger for intimacy.  The man I married was more interested in who-knows-what-until-3 am than going to bed at a reasonable hour and enjoying some midnight magic with his wife.  I literally had to ask him for a deposit when I thought I was ovulating, and that was pretty much the sum of it.  A deposit.  Pathetic.  But I do have two wonderful children now, so it wasn’t for naught.  And therefore it was worth it.  Worth every miserable minute.

I suppose that most of the feelings of ripped offedness (I don’t care if that’s not a word, I’m using it anyway) stem from the marriage.  He probably felt ripped off too, because I wasn’t into giving blow jobs.  That, and he favors big booty and little bustage, and my endowments are exactly the opposite.

It was a chapter.  I’m glad it’s over.

…surrender…

There is something to be said about surrender.  When you carry the weight of your world on your shoulders, the burden is heavy.  How can you let it go?  It takes a certain level of trust to be able to let go, to surrender.  Such moments, however fleeting, are sweet and glorious.  Like honey, smooth and amber, flowing gently, covering everything with a soothing glow.

…mid life…

I’m no longer young.  These thoughts and feelings have been with me for most of my life.  When better to address them, if not now?  I could rue the waste of years and moments that could have been spent loving more fully, or I could gird up and say it’s better late than never.  So now is a good time to address these things.  Or at least try.  I’m on a journey inward, looking for myself.  Finding myself.  Revealing myself.  Unearthing myself.  Discovering myself.  Healing myself.  I must.  Because life beckons.  And I want to live.

…morality, what is it?…

The question of morality has quite an impact on thoughts and feelings revolving around sexuality.  What is morality?  It seems to vary from person to person, and it seems often to be steeped in religious background or  upbringing.  What is it to me?

Is it immoral to go through life, one partner after another, in a seemingly endless quest for ‘The One’?  I would generally say no.  That is, unless the partners overlap against their will.  In which case it’s unkind and unfair to the  unknowing partner.  In other words, unfaithful.  Not good.  Not good at all.

Is it immoral to have sex outside of marriage? I’m thinking along the lines of damage control, rather than religion.  Generally, religion provides rules, guidelines and boundaries designed for our safety.  Not that the intent is never butchered and what results is a far cry from any of that.  The intent of religion is noble.  The execution thereof, not so much.  So I think in terms of damage control.  Sex is personal, intimate and emotional.  It just is.  Well, maybe not to testosterone crazed men.  I’m not a man.  I speak only as a hot blooded Aries woman of Asian and Scandinavian descent.  For me, sex is personal, intimate, and emotional.  To share it with another means sharing intimacy and emotion with another.  It opens a channel of vulnerability.  It seems best, logical even, to keep the impact minimal.  Keep the numbers low.  In an ideal world, my number would have been only one, and I would be married.  But that’s not my world.

Is it immoral to take one’s sexual needs into one’s own hands?  I had a friend who once said, “Better to cast your seed into the belly of a whore than spill it on the ground.”  I’m surprised at myself that I would actually remember a statement, verbatim.  I generally only remember nebulously, without the clarity of detail.  Yet I remember that particular statement.  Distinctly.  Probably because I wholeheartedly disagree.  One, because the attitude propagates a profession that is demeaning to humanity, and two because in so doing, more than one person is involved, hence the possibility of hurt or anguish is amplified.  Masturbation makes complete logical sense.  Nobody is hurt, nobody else’s emotions are involved, no diseases are spread, and a physical need is addressed.  It’s merely taking care of business.  There is a physical need, a tension that grows and can lead to distraction.  Best to nip it in the bud rather than let it lead to something destructive.

That said, I sort of struggle with my Catholic upbringing and the sense of shame associated with such unmentionables.  Masturbation.  It’s hard to even voice the word in thought, let alone write it down.  Religious upbringing aside, it still makes logical sense to me, so truly, at the end of the day, I have no problem with it.

…loving…

I think about loving.  About making love.  I imagine two people, fully immersed in each other.  Skin on skin.  Touching.  Tasting.  Nibbling.  Fingers gliding gently and slowly along curves of limbs.  Bodies tangled up in each other.  Breathing each other’s air.  Feeling everything.  Every point of contact a distinct sensation.  I imagine drifting off to sleep in the warmth of each other’s presence, waking, but only barely, and moving again with each other, tangled up again in semi-consciousness.  Loving each other in waves.  Surrendering completely to each other.  Falling asleep in peace.  Comfort.  Safety.  Waking up in harmony.  Warm.

Smooth.

Honey.

Love.

Is such a thing possible?  If I can imagine it, it must be so.  It must.

…running out of steam…

As is so often the case with me, all these thoughts that are milling about, that need to be sorted and pondered and placed, are sketched in outline and I find myself winded, unable to think further or write further.  All these important thoughts on the verge of clarity.  Lost again in the quagmire of my harried mind.  All these words penned, and yet no epiphany.

At least it opens a door for more thoughts to process.  At least I’ve mustered the courage to mention the unmentionables, so maybe next time, when I can put some thoughts to form, I just might get somewhere.

But not tonight.

January 1st, 2014 | No Comments »

Be

“Be” was the defining word I chose for 2011. I didn’t do such a great job of living up to that word.  I think that now, in 2014, I am much better suited to fulfill the aspiration.

On a whim, I ducked out for a couple of hours after work yesterday to look for a daybook to use for the new year.  Nothing like last minute plans and resolutions for a brand new year.  I journal and I blog, but I haven’t been faithful to a daily log of much of anything.  Ever.  I may take my vitamins and supplements religiously for a few weeks at a time, or I may check my blood sugar faithfully for a few months at a time, and I may log my calories and nutrition for a few days at a time, but anything?  for a year?  It has yet to happen.

The open bookstore that I happened upon had a scant selection of journals and daybooks, but I found one that I think will work.  It’s an engagement calendar, really, and I’m going to give it a go.  Whilst there, I found this little heart trinket which reminded me of the defining word I’d chosen to herald the new year some time ago, and I thought, why not go for a do over.

If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.

And so I shall.

To quote myself, “Maybe this is the year to focus on loving myself the way I want to be loved, or treating myself the way I want to be treated.”

Maybe I will find a way to… …just live, just be.

Be.

Hello 2014.  I am ready for you.

With open arms I greet you.

December 12th, 2013 | 1 Comment »

My body is changing.  My physical form is occupying less space in the universe, and with this slow transformation there is a new self-awareness dawning.  How can I explain this?  It’s almost as if, for all the years –so many years!– that I’ve been taking up so much space, there was a gaping chasm separating my self, the real me, from my self, the physical me.  Maybe I wouldn’t, or maybe I couldn’t look at the latter.  Maybe it was just too much.  This is not who I am, I’d say, and I’d turn the other way.  But the problem is –was–, that we live in a physical world, so there is no escaping the physical self.  That is what manifests.  And what of the inner self?  Where did that one go?  That one who might have been beautiful, smart, capable, excellent.  That one is smothered by the shell that is manifested in the physical.  I spent years struggling with self-acceptance.  The dichotomy between who I was and who I appeared to be was too great.  E R R O R.  C A N N O T   C O M P U T E.

It’s so very easy to soothe this unrest, this distress, with all manner of deflections and cover-ups.   Fill one’s every moment with something, anything, so that you don’t have to think about yourself, and the Grand Canyon that separates your self from your self.  Be a super achiever.  Move mountains.  Consume mountains.  At the end of the day, though, there remains a deep and aching sadness, because you can’t really cover up the Grand Canyon.  It’s still there, and no matter how hard you may try to justify or explain or deflect or deny, the truth of the matter is that it is still there.  You can’t escape from yourself.

Grand Canyon

Grand Canyon

What I’m beginning to notice, as I sit for a moment and gaze down at the legs folded beneath me, is that the chasm is closing.  Ever so slowly.  But it’s closing.  Because when I look down at my physical self, I see my physical self.  And I recognize a faint glimmer of my self.  I can look at the legs beneath me and say, “Oh!  That’s me.  I’m sitting here.  Those are my legs.  They are attached to my body.  They are a part of me.”  And that is the beginning of acceptance.

Two things come to mind as I reflect upon these things.  Why does it take a lifetime and a radical change to deem oneself worthy of one’s own acceptance?  And why is there a chasm at all?  It’s clear to see how the chasm has grown, but not so clear to understand where or why it began in the first place.  The whole matter is tragic.  Such a waste of life.  Such a waste of beautiful moments, beautiful thoughts, beautiful breath.  Such a waste.

I don’t know who will emerge once the chasm has healed, but I do know that I will embrace her, because she will be whole.  She is who I am.  She is the real me.  Hello, old friend, I will say, when we meet.  I’ve missed you.